Victoria, BC – The Capital Regional District (CRD) Board today approved its 2012 Financial Plan. The plan reaffirms the CRD’s commitment to serving public interest and building a liveable, sustainable region, while continuing to demonstrate prudent fiscal management during a time of transition and ongoing economic recovery.
The 2012 Financial Plan is principally a ‘hold the line’ budget with provisions for previously approved Board strategic priorities. The plan was developed within the following Board approved guidelines:
- No increase in service levels for existing services
- New services only as approved by the Board
- Staff continue to explore innovative practices to absorb inflationary costs, benefits and utility/fuel costs within existing budgets, as much as possible
- The plan includes a 1% increase in core service costs, despite salary and utility increases
- The draft budget recognizes provisions for new initiatives directly related to the Board’s strategic priorities.
The shared municipal and Electoral Area services increase in taxes is 2.55%, of which 1.44 % relates to Board approved strategic initiatives. Approved initiatives include: the continuation of the successful Regional Parks Land Acquisition Fund; Regional Transportation, including the development of a Regional Transportation Plan; updating the Regional Sustainability Strategy priorities, which will define where growth and development should happen in the region; development of the Regional Strategic Plan and Regional Deer Management.
The CRD is committed to open communications on major projects and will continue to be diligent in seeking opportunities for input from our stakeholders on regional issues. Funding has been set aside to consult with the public on a number of projects including the development of an Integrated Solid Waste and Resource Management Plan and updating the Regional Sustainability Strategy priorities.
Funding has also been allotted to the development of a long-term vision for resource recovery and use in the region. The plan will address the CRD’s long-term goal of having a series of distinct energy systems along major residential water and sewer trunks that capture available thermal heat and displace use of natural gas in public buildings and facilities across the Capital Region.
Work also continues towards the implementation of a comprehensive kitchen scraps diversion strategy, aimed at extending the finite lifespan of Hartland landfill.
“The strategic priorities identified in the 2012 Financial Plan were established as part of a collaborative decision making process that saw the CRD Board consulting and agreeing on future direction, while respecting local autonomy,” said CRD Board Chair Geoff Young.
“This working year we will continue to focus on ensuring that CRD policies and programs are delivered as efficiently and cost effectively as possible,” said CRD Vice Chair Hill, Chair of the CRD Finance Committee. Spearheading the fiscal review from the staff side is CRD Chief Administrative Officer Kelly Daniels, who will work with Chair Hill to promote fiscally responsible service delivery, while ensuring performance and value for money.
The overall increase in the CRD requisition of 3.4 % also includes improved local administration for Salt Spring Island and increased investment in electoral area infrastructure.
On the Hospital District side, the long range Financial Plan projected a 7.5% increase for 2012. This essential hospital requisition increase has been reduced to 2%.
-30- For further information, please contact:
Andy Orr, Senior Manager
CRD Corporate Communications